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Letters to the editor, September 7

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Denton Record-Chronicle Readers

Artificial intelligence

Did you enjoy your Labor Day holiday? What's in store for the average worker when the majority of production now performed by flesh and blood will be done faster, better and cheaper by some form of artificial intelligence, or AI.

"Oh no, not my job," is your satisfied response. "No machine could replace me!"

In the 1950s, there were hundreds of thousands of typists in company typing pools. They, sad to say, have gone the way of the Dodo bird and the dinosaurs; only they didn't die off; they were replaced by artificial intelligence.

Are you old enough to remember when a telephone receptionist answered your call and directed it to the party you needed to talk to? They were one of the first casualties of AI.

Do you realize that each self-service unit you use in grocery stores and super stores represents a job once performed by humans?

Today banks are using a few self-serve units, but a great flood has its start with a drop of rain.

Facebook-designed chatboxes used to bargain with one another. They made up their own language that people could not understand

Danger lurks on the horizon with man's relationship to AI. Elon Musk and super genius Stephen Hawking have called for regulations relating to the safety of humanity.

Should we be stupid or careless enough to allow AI to take over the world; will they celebrate Labor Day?

John Nance Garner,

Wall follies

I wrote our Congressman Michael Burgess a letter about two months ago about his continued support for Trump's wall between Texas and Mexico. I asked him if it should be built in Texas, thereby ceding the Rio Grande River to Mexico? Would he be willing to go to war with Mexico to build the wall on their side of the river?

If not, then the wall could be built in the center of the river. This, of course, would triple the cost to around $60 billion and it would be built on shifting sand and it probably wouldn't last too long.

I wrote the congressman that the Great Wall of China is still called Qin Shi Huang's Folly. It did not keep the barbarians out or the Chinese in. It is now a tourist attraction but little else.

I mentioned Hadrian's Wall, which was built across Britain. It is only 62 miles long and did not keep the barbarians out or the Romans in. It is called Hadrian's Folly. He never visited the wall and died without ever mentioning it again.

The Soviet Union built the Berlin Wall. If I remember correctly, President Reagan, a Republican, exclaimed on June 12, 1987, "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall." It finally fell and Berlin was reunited.

Anyone advocating a wall between Texas and Mexico does not understand the complex socio-financial and cultural connections between the two countries. Congressman Burgess obviously does not.

Bob James,